How To Test a Digital Thermometer

While the device may be accurate, people usually have some difficulty taking a temperature with an old school glass tube thermometer. The reading takes minutes to measure. If you were using one to take a fever’s temperature, it would be uncomfortable for the patient and inconvenient for the care-provider.  If you are using one as an outdoor thermometer or a meat thermometer, sometimes it's quite difficult to read. Thus, a digital thermometer is more beneficial.

Digital thermometers come with an easy to read screen display. Within a matter of seconds, the temperature can also be easily measured. Digital thermometers are equipped with a tiny and inexpensive computer called the micro-controller inside it. This is what takes the temperature and then allows it to display on the screen. Aside from this, digital thermometers are also not as fragile as the glass ones.

Digital thermometers are readily available everywhere. It's highly recommended for home use, as it is very convenient, accurate and effective. These are the basics to testing how a digital thermometer works. For this purpose, this guide is for measuring temperature using a medical digital thermometer as it is most commonly used at the home:

  1. Digital thermometers come with small buttons. These are usually found on the front of the surface itself. Once it is turned on, you will usually hear a beep. This is an indication that the thermometer is working and is read for use.
  2. Place this under the tongue or in between the armpits, making sure that the thermometer is secure. Hold this for a couple of seconds. You should hear more beeps. This is an indication that the thermometer is reading the temperature. Do note that taking temperature orally or via the armpits may provide different results. Oral temperature readings tend to be higher.
  3. If temperature must be taken via the rectum, apply a little water-soluble jelly on the thermometer first before insertion. And when you do insert this, make sure to hold the thermometer all the way, as the thermometer beeps for the reading. This method is usually applicable for infants only.
  4. You can read the temperature via its LCD screen display. Digital thermometers work with batteries. If you don't see any display but can hear the beeps, chances are you need to get fresh new ones to get an accurate reading.
  5. The digital thermometer is featured with a last memory button. This is useful for keeping track of previous temperature taken. Hold this down as you would an on and off button to see the records.
  6. Because digital thermometers are not as delicate as the conventional tube thermometer, keeping this in its pouch, tucked safely in a drawer. When you want to would like to use this again, always double check with its battery first.

Even as the purpose varies, the use of digital thermometer is very simple, quick and effective.  Some of its most popular brand for medical digital thermometer that’s readily available at stores include Medline, Exergen and Safety First.


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